Maria Zakharova, deputy director of the Department of Information and Press of the Russian Foreign Ministry commented on the decision of the European Parliament to restrict access to the Russian parliament representative in the Assembly.
On June 2, Vladimir Chizhov, the head of the Russian mission in the European Union, thus turned out to be a target of political sanctions.
Also read: PACE wants Russia back. Russia doesn't mind
Zakharova wrote on her Facebook page that such a move was a step back to mediaeval witch hunts. The reason to remove the Russian diplomat from work remains a mystery.
Kirill Koktysh, Assistant Professor of political theory at MGIMO:
"International relations emerged based on the principles of reciprocity and symmetry. Accordingly, when the West imposed sanctions against Russia, she was obliged to impose retaliatory sanctions. Otherwise, Russia would have acknowledged someone else's sovereignty over Russia's affairs. Here the EU is trying to prove that it has this sovereignty over Russia, thereby pushing Russia to another round of sanctions, which is a wrong thing to do."